Hesselink, Gerrit (1755-1811)

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Gerrit Hesselink was born 23 October 1755 at Groningen, died 7 November 1811 at Amsterdam. After securing a Ph.D. at the University of Groningen in 1778 he studied at the Mennonite Seminary at Amsterdam, and served as preacher at Bolsward 1781-1786. In 1786 he was appointed to a professorship at the Mennonite Seminary in Amsterdam, demonstrating in the office his great energy and many-sided learning. For a time (1797-1798) he also taught the Remonstrant students. He also (1800) lectured in mathematics, logic, metaphysics, even physics. Cramer says (DB 1901, 18) that he was more of a natural scientist and philosopher than theologian. Of his many writings in various fields of science, we mention only Uitlegkundig woordenboek ter verheldering van de Schriften des Nieuwen Verbonds (Amsterdam, 1790, 2nd ed. 1804). He was a keen thinker. As an exegete he used the grammatico-historical method. His free and independent judgment led him often on new paths. His love to the Mennonite brotherhood is evidenced by his attempts at unifying the congregations and his collaboration in the founding of the A.D.S. in 1811. He was a modest and helpful man, in spite of his unusual learning, and won the hearts of his students through his personal fellowship with them.


Doopsgezinde Bijdragen (1872): 8 f.; (1901): 18.

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Hege, Christian and Christian Neff.  Mennonitisches Lexikon. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. II, 293 f.

Hoop Scheffer, Jacob Gijsbert de. Inventaris der Archiefstukken berustende bij de Vereenigde Doopsgezinde Gemeente to Amsterdam. Amsterdam: Uitgegeven en ten geschenke aangeboden door den Kerkeraad dier Gemeente, 1883-1884: I, Nos. 686 f.; II, Nos. 618, 2507.

Naamlijst der tegenwoordig in dienst zijnde predikanten der Mennoniten in de vereenigde Nederlanden. (Amsterdam, 1815): 47-49.

Visscher, H. and L. A. van Langeraad. Het protestantsche vaderland: biographisch woordenboek van protestantsche godgeleerden in Nederland, 8 vols. Utrecht, 1903-1918: III, 780-785.

Author(s) Nanne van der Zijpp
Date Published 1956

Cite This Article

MLA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. "Hesselink, Gerrit (1755-1811)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 16 Feb 2019. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Hesselink,_Gerrit_(1755-1811)&oldid=131401.

APA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. (1956). Hesselink, Gerrit (1755-1811). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 16 February 2019, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Hesselink,_Gerrit_(1755-1811)&oldid=131401.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 729. All rights reserved.

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